It's human nature to root for the underdog; to cheer the person that "isn't supposed to be there" as they fight, scratch, and claw their way down a path determined by their dreams. Against all odds. Against critics who have never participated in the field that they are now deemed "experts" in. Against naysayers who suggest that the very top of the ladder isn't attainable and is, therefore, an unrealistic goal. Against behind-the-scenes politics and impatient fans and, seemingly, against the world.
The most difficult fight however is the fight against oneself. In the case of WWE's master technician Daniel Bryan and the NBA's prodigal point guard Derrick Rose, this battle is a war against the inevitable breakdown of their own bodies. On one side of the court, or the ring..whichever you prefer, we see an incredible talent showing flashes of greatness. We believe that we're watching the person who is going to lead their respective industry for years as the constant that all other Superstars will be measured against.
Unfortunately, on the other side of the ring (or the court), we see Injury standing next to Father Time. For all intents and purposes, this is a tag-team on a winning streak. Injury is robbing Kobe Bryant of the chance to give it one last shot at an NBA title. Now, for as great as Kobe can still be from time to time, his skill is overshadowed by the thought that we're seeing a legend at the end of a historic career. Injury also robbed Shawn Michaels of 4-years of in-ring competition. Sure, HBK returned and had one hell of a run but I wonder what amazing matches and storylines we could have seen had he been completely active during the industry's height; the Attitude Era.
As I'm writing this, Derrick Rose is a few months removed from a successful knee surgery that allowed him to play during this year's NBA Playoffs, something he wasn't able to do the past 2 seasons due to other knee injuries. The Bulls are up 2 games to zero against the Milwaukee Bucks in their First Round series. Daniel Bryan on the other hand is the current WWE Intercontinental Champion yet his status for this Sunday's Extreme Rules event is in question due to an undisclosed injury that many fear is another in a series of neck injuries.
We root for Derrick Rose and Daniel Bryan because they are both incredible at what they do, when they're healthy. We're rooting for the underdogs to gain the upper hand on Injury before Father Time puts an end to their careers. We want them to win on the highest level and then have a chance to defend the championship and win again. When it's all said and done, we want to look back on their careers with a smile because they were able to overcome it all instead of with a sigh because they were almost there but their bodies ran out of time. We root for Derrick Rose and Daniel Bryan because they SHOULD be the best and therefore, are one-in-the-same.